Czech Republic Recording Increased Numbers Of HIV/AIDS Cases

The Czech Republic is recording an increasing number of HIV/AIDS cases, primarily because of low levels of awareness about the disease among young people and increased immigration to the country, according to a report released Wednesday by the National Reference Laboratory on AIDS at the country’s National Institute of Public Health, Xinhua/People’s Daily reports. A total of 899 HIV/AIDS cases were reported in the Czech Republic this year, compared with about 500 reported in 2000. Of the 899 HIV/AIDS cases, 764 occurred through sexual transmission, according to Xinhua/People’s Daily (Xinhua/People’s Daily, 11/16). Four percent of reported cases this year were transmitted through injection drug use, according to the Prague Daily Monitor. The report also found that the highest number of HIV/AIDS cases, or 453, were reported in the capital, Prague. In addition, the report found that more than 20% of HIV-positive people in the Czech Republic are women (Prague Daily Monitor, 11/14). According to Marie Bruckova, head of the reference laboratory, 244 of the 899 HIV/AIDS cases reported this year occurred among immigrants from Eastern and Central Europe (Xinhua/People’s Daily, 11/16). She added that the spread of HIV in the Czech Republic in large part is because of the low levels of awareness about HIV/AIDS among young people in the country, who are not concerned about the disease because of the availability of newer drugs (Prague Daily Monitor, 11/14).

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